Project EQuIP: Empowering Queer Identities in Psychotherapy

2018-10-31 14:49:19 | BioPortfolio


The aim of this study is to develop an evidence-based psychosocial intervention for sexual minority women. This intervention will specifically target the adverse mental and behavioral health outcomes disproportionately experienced by sexual minority women, including depression, suicidality, and alcohol abuse, which are known to be driven by stigma-related stressors associated with their sexual orientation (i.e., minority stress processes).


The purpose of this study is to adapt ESTEEM (Effective Skills to Empower Effective Men), developed by Dr. John Pachankis, to simultaneously target the multiple adverse health outcomes sexual minority women disproportionately face, including depression, suicidality, and alcohol abuse, that are linked to minority stress processes.

Project EQuiP will adapt the ESTEEM program for sexual minority women in three distinct phases. The focus of this registered protocol will be Phase 3, however Phases 1, 2 and 3 are described below.

Phase 1 will involve conducting interviews with 20 sexual minority women (SMW) who report experiencing depression, suicidality, and alcohol abuse. Information from these interviews will be used to gather insight from participants that can help inform the adaptation of a cognitive-behavioral treatment approach to specifically target sexual minority women's unique experiences with minority stress.

Phase 2 will involve consultation interviews with 10 community-based mental health experts who treat psychosocial health problems among at-risk SMW. Involvement of key community members in intervention design optimizes intervention dissemination and allows frontline professionals to shape the intervention that they would be most willing to implement. Input of mental health experts working with the SMW community will be used in order to translate existing, but largely untapped, clinical wisdom regarding SMW's minority stress experiences, mental health, and alcohol use into the development of the intervention.

Phase 3 will involve pilot testing the adapted cognitive-behavioral treatment through a randomized controlled trial with 60 SMW who report experiencing depression, anxiety, and alcohol abuse.

Study Design


Sexual Minority Stress


ESTEEM (Effective Skills to Empower Effective Men) for Women


ESTEEM Labratory
New York
New York
United States




Yale University

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2018-10-31T14:49:19-0400

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